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Up Close and Personal with Matt Slot


Some folks enjoy meeting the people behind the scenes of Ambrosia, some are curious about what goes into a new program, and some are just plain nosy. So each issue of The Ambrosia Times we interview a member of the Ambrosia family.

Ambrosia Times - Hey Gayle, who's that guy in the conference room?

Matt Slot - Don't be scared... I'm just a harmless coder and Mac-lover. My name is Matt Slot, and I have traveled from distant exotic lands (ie, Ann Arbor, Michigan) to lend my skills to Ambrosia.

AT - Welcome, Matt, to the Ambrosia Software offices. I trust Hector has been nice to you so far?

MS - Apart from some scathing insults when I get in, he is usually nice. Of course, lately I hear him calling out his own name for a while in the afternoon. "Heeeccctttooorrrr... Heeeccc-t-t-t-o-o-o-o-r-r-r-r-r!!!"

AT - So tell us a little about your background. Where are you from?

MS - Me and my wife Amy are both originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan. I attended the University of Michigan to get my Bachelors and Masters degrees.

AT - So, the University of Michigan hooked you early to the Macintosh and the Internet?

MS - The University of Michigan is heavily into both the Macintosh and the Internet, so my first exposure was my freshman year. Since then, I have spent most of my school and work time learning/using them. Similarly, my free time is usually dedicated to casual Mac-hacking and network game play.

AT - What made you want to come to Ambrosia?

MS - Are you kidding?!? The chance to play games all day!

OK, seriously, I have always admired the high-quality software that Ambrosia has released... they've established a high standard for Macintosh shareware. I think that Ambrosia is exactly the type of small company that makes the Mac a great platform... I wanted to be part of that team!

AT - What were you doing before coming here?

MS - I had been working on a cross-platform group scheduling product in the year since my graduation. (I was the "other Mac programmer" in the company). It was a good learning experience, but I missed the excitement of a Mac-only company and hacking out products that people *really* want.

AT - How do you like Ambrosia so far?

MS - It's great... everyone is so nice (well, except for Hector's insults) and the work itself is very rewarding. How much more could you ask for?

AT - Have you ever programmed any games? Do you have an interest to do so?

MS - I haven't coded any games yet, although I have written numeous game utilities. However, I am very deeply interested in writing games. I enjoy playing most strategic board games and video-arcade games, so I have plenty of "big ideas" that I want to see released to the public.

AT - Aside from the similarities in the weather, how do you like Rochester?

MS - Rochester is a nice town... and we are quickly learning where to find everything we need. A few weeks ago, we visited Niagra Falls for a day, and we regularly go sight-seeing around the area.

AT - In your spare time (which isn't much for a programmer, I understand), what sort of hobbies do you have?

MS - Pretty much coding and playing games. Well, OK, I also like to read, watch television and movies, and to eat! I also plan on attending school in the fall to continue my studies in various (non-computer) fields.

AT - What's it like to have an office with walls?

MS - Well, I certainly don't feel like a "cubicle" prisoner anymore, but I read Dilbert regularly to keep the memories alive.

AT - I understand that you recently learned how to "Eject the backup tape," and have picked up on it remarkably fast. Did you find that your background in programming has helped you to fully understand this process?

MS - Well, this job has certainly been challenging. However, I am hopeful that my years of experience will help me succeed at such tasks. Within a year or so, I expect to be able to perform periodic backups, restarting the server, and sorting office supplices. Maybe then I can be promoted to cleaning Hector's birdcage.

AT - I don't think you want that job. But speaking of being hip-deep, into the Macintosh OS mayhem that is, what do you predict for the future of the MacOS and what are your feelings on the matter?

MS - Well, its a turbulent time... I have lots a "favorite technologies" that I would like to see succeed. However, I have confidence that the new Apple management will make the "right decisions" for the company and the Macintosh line to profit.

AT - I noticed that you are a big fan of the Thursday night line-up on NBC. Tell us, who is your favorite "Friend" and why?

MS - Hmmm, they are all great, but I think that it would be Matthew Perry ("Chandler"). Could he *BE* any funnier?

AT - Well, that's about it, do you have anything else you would like to say to our readers?

MS - Just to say that I am planning contributing to the high-quality that everyone has to come to expect from Ambrosia's products. I want to turn those Windows users green with envy over the quality of the Macintosh and its software.

Ed Note -- Matt seems pretty happy back there next to the store room, and we are happy having him here. However, a word of caution, if you are a Bolo player, watch out for Black Lightning.


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